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Sunday, 15 June 2014

At last!

Despite my best intentions I have just been too busy with work to do any moth-trapping.  Far too many hours and not enough days off.  Still, helps pay the mortgage....

On 6th June I spent an evening at Brimham Rocks, drawn out of hibernation by the prospect of a relatively warm night with little breeze and no rain.  Having dug the generator and traps from under a load of hay bales in the tack room I eventually coaxed it into life.  So, having loaded up all the equipment I set off to Brimham and parked in the upper car-park setting up a trap on a heathy bit and the light over a sheet on the main track surrounded by trees.  I got the generator going again and all seemed fine for 30 minutes or so, and then the generator faltered and stopped.  Blast!  With much harrumphing I started putting the traps away and then noticed that I had forgotten to loosen the fuel cap and that through use had created a vacuum.  I reset the light over a sheet and retired to the car, revelling to the sound of roding Woodcocks and calling Nightjars. As dawn broke a check of the eggboxes did not produce a massive haul but the highlight was undoubtedly three Lunar Thorns.  This was the same location I had six together a couple of years ago so not entirely unexpected.  Unfortunately my attempts to photograph the Thorns failed as they were just too lively.

Last night, I set the 125w MV Robinson trap on my parking space next to the house in Langthorpe, siting it taking great care not to shine into any of the neighbours windows.  A modest haul overnight, nothing particularly exciting among 35 species but at least an opportunity to take some photos.  At least I am up and running for the year!
Elephant Hawk-moth

Gypsonoma dealbana

Hedya nubiferana
 The next micro may well be just a Timothy Tortrix but is it pale enough and lacking any yellowish tinge to be Aphelia unitana?
POSTCRIPT - Charlie has since advised that unlikely to be unitana which is a moorland species and rare on the lower ground.  So, most likely to be Timothy Tortrix and I must try and get one up on the moors to have a chance.